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Programme for International Student Assessment 2006 (PISA 2006)

Research Question

The “Programme for International Student Assessment” enters the third round of surveys with PISA 2006. As before the domains of reading, mathematics, and science were assessed. In line with the rotating focus, PISA 2006 concentrated on the assessment of scientific subjects. As previously, the study aimed to assess how well fifteen-year-old students are prepared for the demands of the knowledge society and lifelong learning.

At the FDZ of the IQB are available the data of PISA-I and PISA-E as well as a sample of 9th graders.

Test Language


Test Period


Test Area and International Link

National / International Connection by the international sample

Target Persons

15-year-old students and students from classes of grade 9 at all types of general education schools (adapted tests in special education schools)

Context Persons

Teachers (Mathematics, Physics, Biology and Chemistry) of the selected students and the principals of the selected schools

Population / Sample

The basic population is composed of all 15-year old students. The sample selection process in each country was subject to detailed quality standards defined by the international project management. In a first step, the educational systems of the participating countries were broken down by key characteristics such as regions (federal states, provinces, cantons, etc.) and school types. Within these subdivisions (in Germany: school types within the federal states), schools were then sampled at random. In the second step of the selection process, 15-year-old students were sampled within the sampled schools, again at random.

In Germany, the option of an additional grade-based sample was taken up. As a result, in addition to the internationally standard sample of 15-year-old school students drawn from the entire student body, a further sample comprising two grade 9 classes per school surveyed in the international sample is available.

For the purpose of Länder comparison the school sample was enlarged by 1,307 schools. Additionally, 10 ninth-graders were selected randomly at each school.

Sample Size

n= circa 39,000 target persons (all together)
n= circa 4,900 target persons (international sample)
n= circa 34.000 target persons (Länder comparison sample)
n= circa 40,000 target persons (grade-based sample)
n= circa 37,000 target persons (age-based sample)

Survey Procedure and Instruments

Competence tests in German - reading comprehension, mathematics and natural sciences (main focus) and background questionnaires (data on student attitudes, the school context, demographic features, and information on social, cultural, and family background) for students, teachers, school principals and parents

Link to the Detailed Description of the Study

Persistent Identifier

DOI: 10.5159/IQB_PISA_2006_v1

Data Accessible via Research Data Centre

To the Study Documentation at the FDZ at the IQB:

Information about the user conditions can be found here:


Monika Lacher
FDZ Secretary
Phone: +49 30 / 20 93 - 465 52
Email: fdz[at]

Selection of Publications using the Data

PDF-file for download can be found here:

Related Data

Programme for International Student Assessment 2000 (PISA 2000)
Programme for International Student Assessment 2003 (PISA 2003)
PISA-I-Plus 2003, 2004 (link)
Programme for International Student Assessment 2009 (PISA 2009)

Research Area(s)